20 year-old Croatian striker prospect, Roko Šimić, is flying high to start his Champions League campaign with Red Bull Salzburg. Šimić earned MOTM honors with a penalty kick goal and assist in a 2-0 victory over Portuguese side Benfica. He did all this in 71 minutes as well.
After a missed penalty kick attempt by teammate Karim Konate in the 3rd minute of the match, RB Salzburg were awarded another spot kick only 12 minutes later as Benfica’s Antonio Silva used his hand to swipe the ball away from the goal line. Šimić stepped up to the spot and confidently ripped the ball into the bottom-right corner of the net. Nearly un-saveable. This is exactly the type of striker Croatia is looking for at the moment. Confident and fearless.
In the 2nd half, Šimić unselfishly passed the ball to teammate Gloukh on a fast counter-attack to make it 2-0 and essentially end the game against 10-man Benfica. An absolutely fantastic start to the season for Šimić who should start getting called up to the Croatian senior side after Euro 2024 concludes.
Benfica’s Petar Musa got the start for Benfica but couldn’t do much with his side going down a man 15 minutes into the match. Luka Sučić came on for RB Salzburg in the 71st minute.
In other news, Luka Modrić got the start for Real Madrid and played 80 minutes in 1-0 victory over Union Berlin. Jude Bellingham scored with the last kick of the match in injury time even though Real Madrid should have scored 3+ goals. Two went off the post. Modrić was given a 7/10 grade from 90min.com as he “Still plenty of life in the old dog yet, often exhibiting his wonderful passing range. Couldn’t quite make the vital contribution in attacking areas.”
Josip Juranović played the full 90 for Union Berlin in the loss.